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Lexus puts hybrid power to the ultimate test at TARGA Newfoundland 2007

Lexus in Canada today announced it has entered a Lexus GS 450h performance hybrid luxury sedan in the internationally renowned TARGA Newfoundland road rally, taking place September 8th-15th on "The Rock".

"Hybrid technology is most often associated with fuel efficiency and emissions reduction, but we know that our Lexus Hybrid Drive also delivers many performance advantages over the conventionally-powered automobile," said Yves Gionet, Director of Lexus in Canada. "The TARGA Newfoundland is the perfect venue to showcase the performance-oriented, environmentally-sensitive Lexus GS 450h before an international field of competitors and a global audience of road rally racing fans."

The Lexus entry will be driven by Marc Lachapelle, editor for Sympatico/MSN Autos and an avid motor sports enthusiast who has raced cars for many years. Marc's co-driver is Jean-François Drolet, who won the TARGA Newfoundland's Grand Touring Class twice as a driver and who has, for the past two years, driven the course-opening vehicle at the event.

In March, the TARGA Newfoundland announced a special competitive class for gasoline-electric hybrid vehicles, making it one of the first motor sports events on the continent to acknowledge the popularity and importance of hybrid vehicles in today's North American society.

The TARGA Newfoundland 2007 starts and ends in the provincial capital of St. John's. In between, drivers and vehicles face a six-day race over 2,200 kilometers of challenging roads through the central and eastern portion of the island. The course consists of a mix of public road stages on which all rules of the road apply, as well as several closed-road TARGA speed sections (more than 400 kilometers), over which drivers have free reign to push their machines to the limits.

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